Group Work

In the Truth in Society section, the concept of group work is dramatically redefined. It is certainly not the kind of work one may have expected in high school. All too often in an average group working environment, there are a select few who do most, if not all of the work. Meanwhile, there are also those who approach the situation expecting to sit idly by while other people do the work. There is no real room for this type of situation in the Truth in Society section. Every group has a common goal or "focus", within that goal, every member has a responsibility to investigate an area that relates to what is being studied by the group. In reality, it's a situation where what you do as an individual, or in other words your independent work, contributes to the main goal or purpose of the group.

"Your studies in the program will focus on a single theme that you'll investigate from a variety of perspectives."
I initially thought that this part of the course description was not going to hold true. However, once we got on track . . . it definitely held true.
On an individual level, this type of situation can be as effective and beneficial as the participant decides. This program allows a participant to explore their interest and discover many things on their own, while allowing them the chance to share what they learn with others. Although you work very closely with each of the professors, there is no one holding your hand. You are constantly responsible for your own efforts and the level of contribution you put forward.

It [The Truth in Society section] is something which requires self- discipline.

It is important to understand that this program allows for self motivation, while providing an opportunity for that same principal to benefit a larger body of people.

Something else I really like is that even if you fail when you're doing something you don't get an F. If you try your best that is what really counts because you are still learning.
It is also important to recognize that groups are made up of all types of people. Some people work well in a group situation, while others need to work at making that a successful experience.

Some things the write up failed to mention is that there will be times that you get so frustrated with others and the work that you may want to give it up, but if you stick with it you will find that it was worth it.

The only thing is that it may or should mention how rough the course can get if you don't try to deal with other peoples' personalities and respect other peoples' work.
This should never be a factor that discourages one from this type of situation. More often than one might expect, the experience of working with new and different types of people is as important as the material studied.

Up to this point I have discovered that the program helps you communicate to others more effectively and brings out comments in you which you never really knew existed.

In essence, the experience of working in this situation will teach you how to respect other people's work, how to handle suggestions and conflict, how to be a leader, and how to be a follower. In short, you will learn more about yourself and others.

Group work is particularly stressed in the Aquinas program. Through this you will gain the chance to develop interpersonal skills that will add to your abilities to work well with others. You will find out how to be a leader and how to be a follower."

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